Film Posters Reinterpreted 2019

As part of this year’s Stroud Film Festival Good On Paper curated an exhibition of prints by Stroud based artists, graphic designers and illustrators reinterpreting iconic film posters from the eighties in their own unique style.

If you missed the exhibition at the SVA or the opportunity to purchase a print then cast your eyes on the thirteen different works featured below and contact the artists direct via their website for further info…

Mark Levy (Beetlejuice) | Rosalie Darien-Jones (Stand By Me) | Adam Hinks (Das Boot) | Alex Merry (Three Amigos) | Joe Magee (Local Hero) | Hannah Dyson (Labyrinth) | Nicola Grellier (Blues Brothers) | Ery Burns (Legend) | Imogen Harvey-Lewis (The Shining) | Marcus Walters (ET) | Dan McDermott (Lost Boys) | Tom Percival (Blade Runner) | Andy Lovell (Amadeus)

Photographs of the exhibition by Tammy Lynn (

Call Out: Ontograph - a museum of... -

By Ed Davenport

This is an open invitation to contribute to a temporary museum exhibition that will be open to the public in Stroud beginning of next year.

There isn’t a limit to what can be submitted. It could be a letter or a correspondence, a collection of some sort, an email thread, a wedding ring, an old Argos catalogue, a family heirloom, a piece of fake gold, a story you wrote, a signed photo of Brian McFadden, an unsigned photo of Brian McFadden, a sound recording, a homemade map, a picture or comic book you did at school, a sketch of your rat, a sculpture of your feelings, a broken Alicia Keys CD case or a functioning tool that you have not and will not ever use...

The aim is to grant anyone and everyone a space to exhibit and share an otherwise unseen or unheard of object/collection/possession. Consequently, and perhaps most importantly, it can create a public resource that provides commentary or interpretation of our shared environment that other facilities may not. There’s also a slim chance this sharing of objects can generate something that’s not reducible to the human meaning or agenda the objects also embody.

You could argue that museums generally elevate certain groups of objects above the everyday, in part to exemplify their greater significance and preserve this hierarchy. One of the intentions of the Ontograph is simply to place all submissions (objects of widely varying origin, age etc.) on a level plain of importance.

For a chance to be included in the exhibition send photos and brief description of your museum object to by Friday 14th December.

Visit and for further info and the facebook event page here for news and updates…

Giffords Circus by Emilie Sandy

This time next week it will be all go at Giffords Circus HQ at Fennells Farm in Stroud as they open the tent doors to an eagerly awaiting crowd for the first performances of their 2018 production My Beautiful Circus.

Prior to next week’s show and the start of Giffords five month tour we sent Stroud based photographer Emilie Sandy up to Fennells Farm to meet founder Nell Gifford and a behind the scenes look at the rehearsals…

“It was a pleasure meeting Nell, the kids, and the family dog - Monkey; the shoot was nice-and-raw and fun. Nell shared her recent drawings of the rehearsals with me - I thought they captured the essence of the Circus beautifully. Whilst documenting the rehearsals, the Dias family were working hard on their performance; I watched in awe at their sheer focus and agility! The turkeys stole the limelight though, following their trainer, and gobbling on cue … hilarious!!!” Emilie Sandy

My Beautiful Circus launches at Fennells Farm from the 4th to the 14th May. You can also catch them at Sudeley Castle, Winchcombe (17th – 21st May), Daylesford Organic Farm, Kingham (24th May – 4th June), Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire (7th – 11th June), Oxford University Parks, Oxford (14th – 25th June), Chiswick House & Gardens, London (28th June – 9th July) , Windsor Great Park (12th – 16th July), Stonor Park, Henley-on-Thames (19th – 23rd July), Barrington, Burford (26th July – 6th Aug),  Frampton on Severn, Village Green (9th – 13th Aug),  Minchinhampton Common (16th –  28th Aug), Marlborough Common (31st Aug – 10th Sept) and Stratton Meadows, Cirencester (13th –  24th Sept). The tour returns to Fennell Farm for the last shows from 27th – 30th Sept.

For further info and to purchase tickets across the tour visit


Pick up this month’s issue (out now!)  for further information and an interview with Nell Gifford by Lorna Davies....

SITSelect Presents: Pete Hoida - New Paintings on Canvas by Noela Bewry



“What use painting is to woman or man is unknown, yet it is surely necessary, as attested to by the caveman and the dandy. I have long pursued a path that avoided the health-plans and dogmas of the high-priests and the moneylenders, and yet have overthrown nothing but painterly cliches and visual platitudes. Over a career of fifty years I have disregarded the demand to produce series of signature works and failed to subjugate myself to mere talent. I am not looking to produce patterns; each period of painting has created, or found, its own identity. Sometimes the characteristics of the work, or foundations, carry over from one year into the next period. Or subside for a time before reappearing transformed, made new yet again. Paintings from the 2010’s can present aspects of the 70’s. The colour say, or the motif, or motive force, the brush-stroke, the time-line, the structure, its translucency or opacity, its serenity or punch. I have eschewed drawing, images, narrative and subject; I have defied the camera that always lies. I have told only the story of the brush that lies. I have quarrelled with the canvas and lost. I have found the surface and ignited it” Pete Hoida 2017

The Malthouse, formerly part of Stroud Brewery, is a formidable venue for an art exhibition. The bare rustic brick walls and vast height are no problem, however, for Pete Hoida’s central piece, ‘Poet and Peasant’ measuring a magnificent 178 x 335 cm. The painting completely holds its own  and commands the space with its sublime passages of pastel shades in pistachio, turquoise, eau de nil, yellow and pink,  offset by blocks of rich sumptuous carmine over-painted by muddy purple, smeared yellow into umber, earthy green and flashes of orange and red.

Hoida allows the under painting to show through creating a rich surface generating space and light. The two works with exaggerated horizontality are hung very high but still maintain a potent presence. Cork has a bold diagonal drive with strong pure colour blocks wedged between midnight blue and black fields to the top and side, with a bite of light yellow and a bar of pale ochre to hold the composition in place. Cobalt Patch has a steady rhythm of dry colour patches moving from one side of the canvas to the other with accents of red uniting the visual field. There are margins at either end, holding bands of colour,  a narrower  blue on the left and a large area of mixed reds through to orange on the right. The eye is guided to the central area of cream, red and black by sloping diagonal strokes within the blue and red margins. These two works read from side to side allowing the eye to pause at each new block of colour as if reading a scroll.

Sleeping Bee

Sleeping Bee

Sleeping Bee overcomes the constraint of an alcove with light fittings, and shines out with a substantial field of buttery yellow to the left travelling and narrowing across the canvas into a belt of lighter yellow merging into lilac grey with a sliver of green in between. The loosely painted blocks in a myriad of colours from peachy red to sandy umber act as ballast to offset the yellow mass and create a disrupted structure.

The three smaller paintings, Mrs. Joyce , Kittiwake and Vanilla, have hard edged and deliberate textural elements to them. They are sweet-toothed brutalist confections punctuated by iced gem motifs, flowing bronze squiggles, volcanic liquorice sheets and gritty rectangles hovering in front of  a delicately painted backdrop of small mineral explosions in  gaseous space. The colour married to the texture is especially compelling,

High Voltage

High Voltage

The most recent painting is High Voltage, an audacious composition with an ovoid floating in front of a black rectangular gash, centrally placed for maximum effect, challenging the viewer with its full frontal stance. The white ground behind holds ghostly images of the under-painting whilst being flanked half way up either side by panels of black, sienna, cerulean, umber and mint green. The delicate blue and green blocks on opposite sides are perfectly placed to hold the space and light within the painting. Incidental drips, drags and flicks offset the pristine dark magenta oval banded by  earthy green.

What I admire and like about Pete Hoida’s work is; his exquisite use of a pastel palette in contrast to blended earthy mixes as well as potent primary colour; his thoughtfully created, poetic compositions with considered placing of shapes and constructed textures; his deceptively casual and seductive brushwork which, while gestural, feels completely managed yet free and fluid; and the way he can create space, structure and light with the choices he makes.

The Malthouse (GL6 6NU) exhibitions are organised by Lizzi Walton director of SITselect, and  ‘Origins and Diversions’ Pete Hoida paintings 1991-2017 runs until 26th March.

Noela Bewry is an abstract painter and a contributor to Abstract Critical, a forum for discursive argument on abstract painting and sculpture. You can follow her on Twitter @noelawb as Noela James Bewry.

Stroud Textiles Trust: Call Out for Fashion Designers!

From the Marling and Evans archive, Ebley Mill (photo by Patricia Brien)

From the Marling and Evans archive, Ebley Mill (photo by Patricia Brien)

The Stroud Textiles Trust have put a call out for women's or menswear designs by Stroud Valleys & Gloucestershire based fashion designers working with WOOL!

As part of the  Cathedral of Cloth: The Life and Times of Ebley Mill exhibition running from Sat 3rd Feb until Sun 4th March 2018 at the Museum in the Park, STT would like to present contemporary fashion garments by local designers at the opening in a 'understated Flash Mob' event. 

The garments do not need to be made entirely from wool but there should be significant use of this material in the outfit(s). The idea behind the live presentation on Sunday 4th February is to illustrate how wool continues to feature in the work of local designers and artisans within Gloucestershire and the Stroud Valleys.

From the Marling and Evans archive, Ebley Mill (photo by Patricia Brien)

From the Marling and Evans archive, Ebley Mill (photo by Patricia Brien)

Low res images of your designs or garments and a short blurb about yourself and concept should be sent to no later than 28th December 2017 for the selection process. If selected, garments will need to be ready by January 15th 2018.

Visit for further information about the forthcoming exhibition and the Stroud Textiles Trust. 



Create Gloucestershire: Pop Up Meeting


Create Gloucestershire is getting ready for its 2nd pop up event – an open invite to meet with others interested in how arts, culture and creativity can be every day for everyone in Gloucestershire.

This time they have invited a speaker with an innovative and challenging idea to bring to the network. CG want to provoke some interesting discussions, fuel some creative thinking and leave you feeling stimulated and inspired.

This months provocateur will be Tomas Millar – as well as being a CG board member he is a director and architect at Millar + Howard Workshop, based in Chalford. Tomas will be speaking about platform thinking. There will then be a short discussion about how we use this way of thinking to create value for ourselves, for each other and for the arts in Gloucestershire.

There will also be  a network exchange slot where you can share 'what you can offer' or 'what you need' from the group. During the break that follows CG hope you’ll be able to match some of these needs and wants as well as have a chance to meet and chat with others.

The free Pop Up event will take place at Cinderford Artspace on Tues 3rd Oct at 1pm.  If you wish to attend you can RSVP here

Create Gloucestershire is a collaborative laboratory for change - a space for dialogue, incubation, research and enterprise. They are driven and resourced by their membership base with a goal to ‘making arts everyday’, valuing the central role and purpose of the arts in our lives. Visit for further info.


The Mother House Stroud

Following London’s first art studio with integrated childcare, where children are welcome into the working space; the Mother House is now piloting in Stroud...

The Mother House studio model is the brainchild of Dyana Gravina from Procreate Project. Stroud based artists Sharon Bennett and Rebecca Stapleford decided to collaborate on this very ambitious project leading the way for a better future for women artists in the Gloucestershire area.

The Mother House started in London in September last year to provide the freedom to work independently or alongside your children also encouraging opportunities to work in collaboration with other artists creating a supportive and inspiring network.

“Motherhouse has been hugely significant to me.  Being a full time at home mother for two small children (and having moved country twice in two years), I found that making my own work had dwindled to almost nothing.  I have actively chosen to spend my time with my kids while they are young as I feel that that it hugely benefits them, it is very rewarding for me in many ways and I didn't want to regret missing the experience later in life.  But it has meant that I have had neither the mental nor physical space (let alone the energy) to create anything for myself.  As a result I was becoming frustrated and disappointed in myself.  My identity as an artist felt fraudulent, and I felt I was losing myself in the hugely absorbing, but relentless machine of managing the needs of our family.  Now that I am back in London and my eldest has just started school, I come to Motherhouse with Molly (my 2 year old) on a Tuesday between the hours of school drop off and pick up.  It's a relatively small window of time but with huge consequences. I am now painting again (and not only in the hours at motherhouse).  I feel connected to a group of artists who share the same challenges and that has been transformative in the way I have begun to think about myself again, and the way I am thinking about new ways to make work (given the challenges of time).  And I have found it incredibly rewarding to share all of this with Molly.  Hearing her giggling and singing while I make work, and seeing her glee as she comes to show me her hands and feet covered in paint while I am painting myself, makes me realise I do not have to compromise between her needs and mine.  I think it's important for her to see me as an artist as well as a mother, but it isn't something that takes me away from her or that she has to compete with.  In fact we both come away from Motherhouse stimulated, energised and satisfied. And importantly to me, we've done it together." Jessica Blandford - Visual artist

The Mother House idea is born in response to the urge of “making” within the life-changing experience of motherhood, offering a collaborative yet intimate space to curate your practice whilst ensuring your journey into motherhood is fed in a creative and inclusive way. The Model facilitates integration and exchange with the Mothers’ art practice, bringing the child's development closer to art. Crucially, children learn about women's roles outside the domestic environment.

The vision is to establish the model over the UK and offer this great model to different communities. 

The Mother House Stroud Pilot will take place on Mondays to Fridays from 9:30am to 4pm at the Nailsworth Town Hall and will run from Monday 7th until Friday 18th Aug. For further information visit and for bookings contact


Review: Julie Cope’s Grand Tour - The story of a Life by Grayson Perry

Image by Max McClure

Image by Max McClure

By Sarah Edmonds

Grayson Perry hardly needs an introduction. National treasure and arbiter for social anthropology in our troubled times, Perry is one of Britain’s most famous living artists (alongside David Hockney of course.) He was awarded a CBE in 2014, the Turner Prize in 2003, is a Bafta Award winner and ceramicist turned television presenter.

He is currently exhibiting The Most Popular Exhibition Ever! at The Serpentine Gallery in parallel with this exhibition - a diptych of jacquard tapestries at New Brewery Arts Centre in Cirencester. Far from being ‘out in the sticks’ the Cotswolds and - more specifically - New Brewery Arts, led by their ambitious CEO Beth Alden, had the vision to bring this touring Crafts Council exhibition right to our doorstep. Indeed, there are already links with the Essex born artist, who opened the newly refurbished arts centre in 2008. And yes, he came as his alter-ego, Claire, and was wearing his Alice in Wonderland dress and peep toe shoes.

The fictional character, Julie Cope,  is at the centre of these works, designed and made for the Essex House Tapestries, acquired by the Crafts Council Collections in 2017 and now touring the UK. They tell the story of her life – she is an ordinary Essex every-woman and seen through Perry’s eyes she is a heroic figure. She represents all women – your mother, sister, friend – but also the narrative of an average life, full of trials, tribulations, mistakes and regret. The tapestries detail the story of Julie’s life in two parts, with many obvious and more hidden social references, documenting her modest beginnings, her rise in social standing through to her final demise at the hands of a bike courier. It’s witty and tragic but ultimately positive – Julie overcomes her limitations and finds happiness and true love.  

Every detail of this exhibition has been carefully considered, from the vibrant entrance banner, instructions on how to social media share: hashtag #juliecope #graysonperry #newbreweryarts, multiple information panels and the dulcet tones of Grayson himself reading the Ballad of Julie Cope to accompany the experience. There’s a guide for young visitors (complete with spy holes and a quiz) and plenty of merchandise to round off your visit. It’s commercial, accessible and unpretentious. It is exactly what Perry strives to achieve in all his work, “to widen the audience for art without dumbing it down.”

Image by Max McClure

Image by Max McClure

The cool, dark exhibition space is a welcome retreat from this week’s heat wave. It’s a quiet cave, a place to sit, listen and reflect – a monument to a life. What would two tapestries say about my life?

What I find interesting and frankly impressive is the scale of this concept – it’s a three dimensional novel. Having created his muse, Julie Cope, the project has grown to include the building of a large chapel on the Stour Estuary at Wrabness. It’s the artist’s most ambitious project yet, on one level it is a temple to Julie, built by loving husband Rob, but also serves as a tribute to all the Essex folk that Perry grew up with. When the tour is finished, the tapestries will return to Wrabness and will always be viewed in this setting. It’s both genius and weirdly curious.

Perry has created a virtual life complete with social, political and economic identity. Julie had hopes and dreams, she did her best and made mistakes along the way – just like the rest of us. Perry details where she smoked her first cigarette as teenager, her parents Norman and June, the arrival of her daughter Elaine, Dave’s affair with Pam.....the layers in this story are staggering. Julie is a tool for a wider conversation about social mobility, personal identities, “I investigate our slippery sense of who we feel we are....the ongoing process of 'being ourselves'”.

Friends all agreed they were “A Perfect Match”

The first tapestry details Julie’s birth during the Canvey Island floods of 1953, her teenage years hanging out in Basildon, the birth of her children with her first husband Dave. It’s a deceptive portrait of the perfect aspirational family, but there are symbols and clues which point to the breakdown of their marriage. Look out for Pam, the cat, a dual reference to the popular Lloyd Webber musical popular at the time and the name of Dave’s lover. Alan Measles, his childhood teddy bear, makes an appearance and represents the only constant male figure in Perry’s life after his parents’ divorce and his mother’s subsequent affair with the abusive milkman (a cliché that Perry could never overcome.)

In Its Familiarity, Golden

In this second tapestry, Julie has developed into a mature woman with a good job and wider horizons. She’s moved to Maldon, her children are at university and she’s found Rob, “exotic, a gent with nothing to prove to other men.” It’s all going swimmingly until she is mown down by an inexperienced curry delivery driver on a moped. A tragic end to an ordinary life. The map depicts the upward shift in Julie’s life from Canvey Island, to the high rise in Basildon, terrace and finally the cottage in provincial Maldon. Look out for symbols throughout – the Duran Duran album cover sleeve on the back of a denim jacket, peace symbols on Julie’s cardigan show her new preoccupation with middle class ideologies, world peace, the plight of refugees. She dies aged 61, her social worker’s lanyard around her neck. In response to this tragedy, Rob promises to build a shrine to his beloved – a Taj Mahal for Essex – and so, ‘House for Essex’ is born.

Image by Max McClure

Image by Max McClure

Tied up in the story of Julie, Dave and Rob are historical references to the patrician art of making tapestries and the working class art of ballad-writing. Tapestry weaving saw its heyday in the 16th & 17th centuries and cost thousands of pounds, even then, meaning they were the preserve of the elite. In contrast, ballads were the cheapest and most direct way of sharing information, printed on a single sheet and pinned to the walls of the alehouse. Perry references the large tapestry maps commissioned by society gentleman Ralph Sheldon in the 1590’s – a nod to these historical documents, he hopes the Julie Cope tapestries will also be regarded as such in hundreds of years time.

The medium used to present this story is also significant in that Perry has always worked three dimensionally – using age old processes like ceramics and needlework to present modern ideas. Perry is the poster boy for contemporary craft, speaking up for the relevance of craft in the digital age - he is keen to use the latest technology to modernise his work as artists have done for centuries. The tapestries were drawn on an interactive pen display, translated into coded instructions for a digital loom by Factum Arte in Madrid, then threaded and woven by Flanders Tapestries. (The Dutch are famed for their tapestries.)

Julie Cope’s Grand Tour is a continuation of the recurring themes in his work – the big questions on life, love, death of course, but predominantly social mobility which he gently scrutinises – our consumerist, social climbing society. There is focus on finding extraordinary moments in ordinary lives, how the mainstream can often prove the most meaningful. I urge you to go and see the exhibition. You might not fully understand them, but they do pose important questions about our society, our identities, ambitions and purpose. It’s also really fun to see the work of a Turner Prize winning artist up close.

“Immediately after I won the Turner prize, a journalist asked me whether I was a serious artist or just a lovable character. My response was to say: 'I’m both.' I don’t see them as mutually exclusive. Art can be intellectually stretching, significant, moving and fun at the same time,” Perry concludes. After all, he accepted the prize on behalf of ALL artists, for ‘thirty years of hard graft’, of sticking to his guns and plugging away.....and it paid off.  

Julie Cope's Grand Tour: The Story of A Life by Grayson Perry is showing at the New Brewery Arts Centre until Sunday 16th July. Visit for further info.

Sarah Edmonds is an Italian graduate from University College London, where she also studied History of Art and a short course at Slade School of Fine Art. She's been a tour guide in Tuscany and now works in marketing for Pegasus Art in Thrupp - supplier of fine art materials @SarahWordBird

Review: Hilles Studio Collective by Leah Grant

Images by Leah Grant

You may already know of Hilles House. Perhaps you are vaguely aware of its location, conscious that it was once the home of esteemed fashion journalist and icon, Isabella Blow. Maybe you even know a little of its 100-year history, that it was designed by Detmar Jellings Blow in the Arts and Crafts style in 1913, that the architect lived by the principles of the Arts and Crafts movement and built the house with these principles in mind. You might even be aware that the Hilles estate contains an artist’s studio and that the views from both the house and this workspace offer a breath-taking panoramic of the beautiful Gloucestershire countryside.

I’m ashamed to say I knew very little of the property or the family who owned it when I visited on a sunny Saturday afternoon during SITE Festival’s Open Studios. What greeted me and what remained long after my visit ended, was the unassuming nature of Hilles House (despite its awe-inspiring location and illustrious interior) and the wonderful way in which the historic paintings and candid family photographs that are a permanent fixture in this beautiful home seemed to complement the contemporary art pieces produced by the Hilles Studio Collective for this special exhibition.  

From Sheridan Jones’s surreal self-portraits to the haunting figurative works of Nick Twilley, the pieces on display here are as thought-provoking as the house itself. Featuring artists (including Amaury Blow, grandson of Detmar Jellings Blow), designers and craftwork associated with Hilles, this inspiring exhibition is not only artistically progressively, but touchingly sympathetic to the area and its history.

Images by Leah Grant

Wandering through such an inspiring setting, it becomes easy to draw narrative connections between the artworks on display and the history of the Hilles estate. Perhaps the evocative pieces created by Amaury Blow touch on the house’s relationship to its surrounds, to the natural world that exists beyond the house itself. Possibly Saffron Knight’s rich fabrics take inspiration from the friendship between Detmar Jellings Blow and the celebrated 19th century textile designer William Morris; and maybe the bespoke knitwear produced by Redheart England is a nod to the house’s strong links with the fashion industry (owing to his friendship with Isabella Blow, the renowned fashion designer Alexander McQueen was a regular visitor at Hilles). Though these parallels may not have been intended on creation, they add a new level of depth to an exhibition that is already multi-dimensional.

There is obvious passion here, not just in the house and its selection of contemporary artworks, but in those overseeing the exhibition. I was kindly given a potted history of Hilles and an enthusiastic precis of the artwork on offer from Julian, the brother of Sheridan Jones who lives in a cottage on the Hilles estate. His keenness to promote Hilles was, and remains, infectious and needs to be amplified; we should all be aware of the house’s rich artistic heritage, of its links to some of the country’s finest designers and craftsmen. Hilles House is very much a staple of the Stroud Valleys art world and we should feel proud that it exists within our artistic community. Let’s hope that this beautiful estate continues to nurture and inspire local talent for many years to come.

Leah Grant is a writer and photographer with a keen interest in art and literature. On her blog, Bellyful of Art, you can find reviews of exhibitions, installations, dance performances and literary events as well as her own lovingly created pieces of short fiction

Hilles Studio Collective

From left to right: Saffron Knight, Mara Castilho, Sheridan Jones and Redheart England

Hilles House has always had a strong connection with the Arts and Crafts movement with links to Ruskin and Morris via its founder Detmar Jellings Blow. It is a place that has nurtured artistic collaboration and creative debate throughout its history.

The Hilles Studio Collective is a new group exhibition of new works featuring artists, designers and craftwork associated with Hilles House and it's landscape scheduled to take place over the two Stroud Open Studios weekends in May (6th-7th and 13th-14th). The newly formed collective is a talented and exciting group of artists, from sculpture to painting, photography, textiles, digital, video and performance. Exhibiting artists include: Amaury Blow, Mara Castilho, Redheart England, The Ark Ensemble, Colin Glen, Sheridan Jones, Saffron Knight, Kirsty Stockdale, Nick Twilley and Delight A Thief with more artists to be announced soon.

The free entry exhibition starts from 11am and runs until 7pm each day and also features live music and performances at 4pm and food and refreshment throughout the weekends.

From left to right: Amaury Blow, Colin Glen, Kirsty Stockdale and Nicholas Twilley

A Hilles Studio Supper Club will be offering a special Greek themed dinner on the 13th May in which you can expect to experience the joys of Greek music, vegetarian and meat barbeque (in a traditional Greek style), plate throwing(!) and a film screening. The supper club costs just £25 per head – book in advance by the 7th May by calling 07854332193 or 07976207530.

For news and updates follow the Hilles Studio Collective on facebook here  

Select Festival and Trail 2017: Interview Shorts

A series of interviews shorts filmed by Katie Jane Watson with artists and makers appearing at this years Select Festival and Trail:


Cleo Mussi creates inspiring and extraordinary work using discarded china. In this artist interview for SIT, Cleo talks about her interests in environmental issues and new work involving weeds.

Meet Cleo at Frogmarsh Mill during the Select Trail where you can buy and commission her work. The Trail is open May 6/7 & 13/14 2017 - find out more on the SIT select website here


In this latest film on Makers and Making commissioned by SITselect for the Select Festival 2017,  Valerie Michael and Neil MacGregor talk about their work.

MacGregor & Michael create beautiful and lovingly crafted leather goods from their studio in Tetbury, Gloucestershire. Meet Val and Neil in their Tetbury studio (studio 33) in May 2017 during the Select Trail where you can buy and commission their work.


Jilly Edwards is a contemporary tapestry weaver. She always travels with sketchbooks, journals and reading books so she can record moments and memories, recording these responses in quick gestural marks, whether of colour, shapes, textures or words. So when she returns to the studio she has an ‘aide memoire’ to help embellish her ideas.

SIT select filmed Jilly in her new home and studio in Bristol.

Pick up a copy of this month's issue (out now) for a preview of this years Select Festival and Trail by Sarah Edmonds. 

Virtual Reality Comes to the Vatch by Rupert Howe

INDEXprojects invite you to journey through the strangely familiar from Stroud to Plymouth without leaving a barn in the Stroud valleys. Rupert Howe dons a virtual reality headset to find out how they do it...

Imagine donning a headset and entering a world which appears real, in which you can see, hear and even touch your surroundings, but is in fact a technological projection. Once the stuff of science fiction, such virtual worlds are fast becoming a reality, thanks to technological advancements such as Oculus’s gaming headset, Rift, Leap Motion’s Mobile VR platform and Google’s “augmented” eyewear, Glass, which could project overlays of weather forecasts, search results and social media alerts onto the user’s field of vision.

Such developments aren’t without their issues – Google recently halted production of Glass hardware in response to privacy and safety concerns. But virtual reality, or VR, has huge potential as an audio-visual experience, not least in the way artists create and display their artworks. This year’s SITE Festival, for instance, will feature the premiere of Corridor, a new VR-based collaboration between Stroud based INDEXprojects, who presented Siobhan Hapaska’s installation The Sky Has To Turn Black Before You Can See the Stars in the Goods Shed for SITE 2013, Plymouth’s KARST gallery and the i-DAT research lab at Plymouth University, who specialise in “playful experimentation” with creative technology.

Staged in an 18th century barn in the Slad Valley, users will don a VR headset linked to an Android smart phone and enter a mysterious corridor lined with doors which open to reveal darkened ‘gallery’ spaces. Each one contains film and video works by artists linked to INDEX and KARST, with viewers able to move within the space as if in three-dimensions. In a recent conversation, INDEX artists Ali Kayley and Helen Kincaid discussed how the project originated, what visitors to the event might expect to see and the wide-ranging creative potential currently being realised through VR technology.

 So, how did Corridor come about?

Helen Kincaid: In essence, Corridor is a virtual reality space which links Index Gallery in Stroud with our co-collaborators KARST, an artist-led gallery in Plymouth. The idea for the project came about some years ago, but had its basis in forming a network of artist-led organisations to share exhibitions. That led us to look beyond moving physical artworks in favour of collaborating in a virtual space where events could happen simultaneously regardless of geographical distance. So we took the Stroud-Plymouth journey as our starting-point, using elements of those two places to create features and experiences which occur in the ‘rooms’ which branch off from the central corridor.

Ali Kayley: We also wanted to use it as an example of what other artists could do. We chose a space that’s slightly ominous, but the next artist could choose to approach it in a completely different way.

Did either of you have previous experience with this kind of technology?

AK: No! A year ago I would never have dreamed I’d be creating a virtual reality artwork, but now I’m really energised and inspired by it. I want to make my own work in VR. So it’s been a fantastic process to get to where we are now, exhibiting in this 18th century barn in the countryside near Stroud with the most modern, up-to-date technology there is. It’s very exciting.

The contrast between a historical building and these digital artworks is part of the project, then?

AK: Kind of, because we’re based in Stroud and have previously used the barn for exhibitions. So there was always the possibility we could create that lovely juxtaposition between the brand new and the ancient.

What is it about working with VR which appealed to you?

HK: The really exciting thing about virtual reality is that your brain works the same way as it does in reality. So you find yourself responding to something despite yourself, even though you know it’s not actually real. It’s completely immersive, which makes it such an exciting prospect for artists.

AK: You can make people feel as if they’re falling or make their heart beat faster and then feed those sensations back into the work, so there are creative possibilities which aren’t there in other mediums. In our works, the pieces exist more like installations, so you walk around inside the VR environment as if you’d walked into a film installation in a physical museum or gallery. The corridor and rooms themselves are computer generated, but we’ve slipped our film work into them as if they were actual spaces.

Will you be there to guide people as they cross into this virtual world?

AK:  The software we’re using is actually quite minimal; it can be used on a phone with a folded cardboard headset. So I don’t know how much we’ll need to describe the experience in advance. Just by looking and moving your head you quickly get a sense of being in a three-dimensional space.

HK: We wanted to cut down on the number of choices the viewer made because it can get in the way. So you approach the doors and they open, rather than it being this game of how do I turn the handle? That’s not our interest in VR at present, it’s more about presenting the films within the virtual space as artworks.

So which artists’ work will be on show?

AK: At the Stroud end are three artists: Joanna Greenhill, Helen Kincaid and myself. We created the pieces collaboratively and there’s one room which offers an immersive, 360-degree sense of glimpsed woods, a driving film which features audio by electronic duo Near Future and a piece of work filmed at WSP textile factory in Stroud. Works on the theme of water by Carl Slater and Donna Howard from KARST in Plymouth, are sited at the other end of the corridor, so by travelling from one to the other you know you’ve arrived in a different place.

HK: We’re delighted with the result, but it’s still at the research and development stage at present and Corridor is really a prototype. The next stage will be to invite other artists in to work within the space – or even change it completely. The possibilities are boundless!

Corridor will be on show as part of SITE Festival 2017 at Knapp House Barn, The Vatch, Slad, GL6 7JZ on Saturday 22nd & Sunday 23rd April 11am - 4pm. To hear more from this conversation, visit the SITE Resound Radio podcast page at

Rupert Howe is a freelance writer based in Stroud whose work has appeared in Q, Esquire and numerous now-defunct magazines, including The Face

The Women's Art Activation System presents: Stroud Wikithon

Joy Batchelor,
  • Do you know of women, past or present who have contributed to the arts in Gloucestershire?
  • Do you want to spend an hour, or several, working towards gender balance in the historical record as presented in Wikipedia?
  • Do you want to learn about how Wikipedia works?
  • Do you want to learn to edit Wikipedia?
  • Do you want to celebrate and encourage women’s creativity?

 The Women’s Art Activation System (a recently formed Stroud-based collective) will be hosting a Wikithon from 10am-4pm on Wednesday 8th March, International Women’s Day at Atelier Textile & Craft Club. They are looking for women to write about and need local historians and sources to let them know about the hidden talents in Gloucestershire past and present. This all-day event is designed to improve coverage of women and the arts on Wikipedia, and encourage women and girls in Gloucestershire to learn to edit Wikipedia. It will be child-friendly and free to take part. Drop in for a short while or stay all day - bring suggestions and reference material, learn to edit Wikipedia, help others to learn and discover local women artists you may not have heard about!

May Morris

May Morris

What will the Wikithon Involve?

The Wikithon will include tutorials for the beginner Wikipedian, ongoing editing support, reference materials, and refreshments. People of all backgrounds and technical abilities are very warmly welcomed to take part. A gong will sound each time some information is added and a mini training session takes place hourly so you can drop in and pick up the tasks throughout the day.

Inequality on Wikipedia

In a 2011 survey, the Wikimedia Foundation found that less than 10% of its contributors are female. This lack of female participation and other factors have led to an alarming shortage of content about women and art in the world’s most popular online research tool. 

Art+Feminism Edit-a-thons and other initiatives make an impact on the gender gap through crucial improvements to art and feminism related subjects on Wikipedia. Since 2014, over 280 Art+Feminism Edit-a-thons have taken place across the world, creating and improving an estimated 4,600 articles. Other participants in this project include The Museum of Modern Art in New York, Tate Britain and a host of other arts institutions large and small.

The Inaugural Stroud Wikithon is organised by Katharina Child, Deborah Abramson, Uta Baldauf, Sharon Bennett, and Sarah Dixon as part of the new Women’s Art Activation System. Follow them on facebook  and the facebook event page here for further info.

Professional Photography For Artists!

On Saturday the 4th February professional photographer Katie Jane Watson will be setting up in Studio One at Pegasus Art to take pictures of local artists work.

Nicola Grellier,

Katie shoot's tethered so pictures can be seen as she is photographing (colour correct images).
Bookings in half an hour slots (approx. 10 paintings can be photographed in this time). Just £10 per picture, with a discount for more than 10 images. Hi res jpegs supplied via wetransfer following shoot...
Booking is essential, please contact Katie on 07941181498 or email

Katie also contributes to Good On Paper, most recently the filming and editing of GOP TV:Why Art? a series of 'interview shorts' with local artists. See the films at

Gallery: Good On Paper @ The Prince Albert 7th Jan 2017

We would  like to extend a huge thanks to the artists who performed and the people who came to our party at the Prince Albert last month, together we raised one thousand pounds for Stroud Women’s Refuge and Rodborough Playgroup

There are further GOP events in the works but until then see below for images of the night by Fred Chance , James Kriszyk and Ben Peer...

© Fred Chance,

© James Kriszyk,

Andy Lovell 'Shifting' Exhibition By Sarah Edmonds

A few weeks before agreeing to write this piece, I spent an evening at The Painswick Hotel (winner of the Sunday Times Travel section 'Hotel of the Year 2016'). Hanging above the fireplace in the snug room, were two beautiful prints of local scenes, depicted in subtle greens and greys. I had been admiring Andy Lovell prints without even knowing it...

When we meet today at the Museum in the Park, Andy’s prints look fresh and vibrant, in contrast to the dreary, grey skies outside. The spacious gallery is buzzing with Stroud College art students, happily sketching Andy’s work. There is a gentle hum of creativity.

Shifting is a culmination of three year’s work – taken from hundreds of drawings made en plein air, all over the country (Norfolk, Gloucestershire, Cornwall, London) and boiled down to sixty four stunning monotypes and screenprints ‘taken from land, the sea and all in between.’ All limited edition pieces, each one unique, prices range from £240 to £1,400 – they are wonderful, affordable and covetable.

The title of this exhibition reflects Andy’s own artistic journey – his drive to draw and paint, using a multitude of skills acquired from a career in illustration and image making. There is plenty of texture and movement in his work and the use of colour is sensitive, sometimes bold and always considered - layer upon layer of subtleties.

“I got obsessed with the trees on my daily dog walk – they turned into a series of six very large works entitled ‘Arboreal’ (I – VI). Even on grey, dingy days, the colour of the bark was luminous, almost fluorescent. I felt compelled to try to convey the power and might of these enormous trees through isolating and abstracting them - I was drawn to the exposed trunks that resemble dinosaur feet.”

Trees, of all size and shape, are certainly a strong theme throughout this exhibition. Walking Wood portrays neat avenues of birch, standing to attention like dutiful soldiers. There is a drama between the symmetrical man made planting of these tall trees and the untamed landscape beyond. In Early Morning Mist the full and conical trees shiver in the cold morning fog, while the Norfolk Trees are Van Gogh-esque with their swirling arms and brooding skies.

There is plenty here to connect you to Stroud and its surroundings – Dusk, Rodborough Fort is my patch and a favourite walking spot, Sunset Swifts Hill in glorious Slad and Woodchester Woodwind (selected for the RWA Open 2016) all evoke treasured places right on our doorstep. And of course, the much loved Giffords Circus.

Andy tells me he had a lot of fun spending four days watching rehearsals before the Giffords Season this Summer. He recalls an interesting meeting with the acrobats, before sketching The Aerialists – two bendy Americans chat and limber up simultaneously, one bringing her leg right up to her ear! Wondering at their death defying feats and inspired by the originality and skill of the rest of the troupe has resulted in four stunning works, full of movement and energy. Many of these prints have sold already – grab yours while you still can. (£240 unframed for Yee ha and The Aerialists and £750 for Jack and Cartuchio, Line Dance and Jack and Cartuchio, Dosey Doe) 20% of the sale proceeds go to the Giffords Circus Arts Foundation.

One of the young students approaches Andy cautiously, “Please may I have your autograph?” Andy is charming and courteous, asks for his name and duly signs his name on a postcard. “I love how you’ve used your finger prints in this painting,” he continues, pointing at Mansions of Summer Shade. What a treat for these students to meet the artist himself, who can explain first-hand how he created each artwork. Andy describes the process of painting straight onto a plate, using castors from an old chair to create the vertical uprights of the tree trunks, and his finger prints providing the abstracted leaves and texture. The acid yellow colour is Chartreuse Yellow.

Indeed in Jack and Cartuchio, Dosey Doe Andy used his fist and wrists to move the paint around. In two display cases, you can see the artist’s tools – useful for those, like me, who are curious about the processes involved. Other artist tools include; Intaglio etching ink, castors, turpentine, toothbrushes, palette knives, make up remover pads, lip salve, wire wool, acrylics, finest acrylic ink, lots of paint brushes, sketchbooks….and a corkscrew! (thrown in for good measure.)

Andy’s practice combines working from his studio at home and the well equipped print studios at the GPC (Gloucestershire Printmaking Co-operative), at Griffin Mill Trading Estate. “It’s a rare and wonderful thing to have the use of traditional printing presses with facilities for lithography, screen printing, letterpress, etching and so on. There’s a physicality to printing, I’m an impatient artist – I want to get things down quickly. When you peel the ghost print off the plate, it’s incredibly exciting.” And if he needs extra supplies and art materials, he just has to run upstairs to Pegasus Art, “Their joie de vivre is infectious. All I can hear from downstairs is laughter. Many of the staff are artists so they know their stuff,” he concludes.

Make the journey to Museum in the Park before 4th December and you won’t be disappointed. You will also have the chance to see his cityscapes of Balham and Clapham tube stations, Victoria Station Departures and the 17.47 from Victoria in the new Pavilion – a fantastic new exhibition and learning space in the delightful garden.

Andy also recently appeared in the GOP TV: Why Art? series; interview shorts with Stroud based artists in their studios filmed and edited by Katie Jane Watson. Click here to watch the film!

Sarah Edmonds is an Italian graduate from University College London, where she also studied History of Art and a short course at Slade School of Fine Art. She's been a tour guide in Tuscany and now works in marketing for Pegasus Art in Thrupp - supplier of Fine Art materials. @SarahWordBird

Donnelly Sisters Art Agency

Image by James Kriszyk

Image by James Kriszyk

Donnelly Sisters is a new artist agency founded by sisters Kirsty and Katy Donnelly representing talented contemporary artists from across the disciplines: sculptors, painters, designers, photographers, fine artists and live performers.

Based in Stroud former TV producer Kirsty and ex-recruitment consultant Katy are passionate about the talent they represent and are keen to create a collaborative and comfortable base for their clients. With their agency they will support, develop and generate sales for local talent, as well as artists from further afield...

The sister duo are celebrating the launch of their company with a pop up gallery in Bedford Street hoping to bring a fresh new approach to the traditional gallery look, creating a 'New York loft apartment' feel with three floors full of art together with a bar and music.

Featured artists include Abigail Fallis, James Kriszyk, Tamzin Malleson-Mason, Colin Glen, Elle Kaye, Beatrice Brown, Marcus Walters, Daniel Sparkes, Sam MarshLorraine Robbins and Sean Heather.

Opening on Sat 19th November from 10am-5pm they will be selling a series of original works – one off prints, paintings and sculptures. 

There will be an opening night for prints on the 2nd December and from the 3rd December they will be selling affordably priced prints every weekend in the run up to Christmas Eve.

For further information contact and follow them on their facebook page for news and updates!



Sophie Ryder Exhibition @ Wetpaint Gallery by Sarah Edmonds

Following her recent talk at the Cheltenham Literature Festival, internationally acclaimed artist and sculptor Sophie Ryder is currently exhibiting at Wetpaint Gallery until 29th October. Her new book, A Life in Sculpture is a sumptuous and weighty tome dedicated to her craft and lifelong passion for artistic endeavour – it is available to buy for £25, along with mugs and tote bags for a special keepsake or Christmas gift.

Following her hugely successful solo exhibition at Salisbury Cathedral in July this year, her work has become more recognisable and sought after than ever. Her monumental pieces, some life size, some as big as a house,drew crowds to the grounds of the equally impressive cathedral and spire. “I get a thrill from working ‘big' " the artist says, often working in the open air from dawn until dusk.

Ryder is best known for her wire sculptures of mythical creatures, hares and hybrid beings sculpted in affectionate poses, often hugging and bound together. They are imaginary, magical and often humorous depictions of relationships and emotions. If you are a local, you may be familiar with The Hare and the Minotaur that stands on Cheltenham Promenade and Paintpots outside the New Brewery Arts Centre in Cirencester. Although her signature Lady-Hares tower over public spaces in Chicago, Vancouver and Palm Desert, she is a Cotswolds artist, and we have claimed her as our own!

What a joy, then, to find her work at Wetpaint Gallery in Chalford. Her work is so immediately appealing – her figures half human, half ‘being’, loveable, huggable, vulnerable creatures that you want to take home and care for. Giclee prints start at a very reasonable £180 and are surely a shrewd investment (I am tempted) whilst larger pieces such as Rising – a gorgeous, crouching hare with a rust patina, are ‘price on application’. There are plenty of loveable hounds to see – animals have been central to Sophie’s life from her earliest childhood memories, indeed she has five lurchers of her own. Me and my Five Babies a lanky lurcher with five baby minotaurs on his back, Pedro a dog sculpted from steel wire and Sitting Horse Miniature bronze, are full of character, about to run out of the gallery and across the open fields.

This exhibition shows the extensive range of her work, the breadth of materials she uses and the varied scale of her work. Peak inside a cabinet and admire a collection of adorable bronze miniatures (starting at £540), marvel at her ‘wire drawings’ that at once look like charcoal sketches and relief sculpture, enamel paintings onto stone, wire sculpture, charcoal and pastel drawings on a large scale Hugging on Top, giclee prints - Three Blue Egyptian Ladies catches my eye, bronze plaques and a series of more colourful prints depicting The Lovers priced at £250.  

How clever that she has created a signature theme that runs throughout her distinctive work – instantly recognisable and covetable. “As a child I loved Picasso’s Minotaurs, but I developed mine to be a partner to the Lady-Hare, so he’s less sexually threatening. Mine is strong, loving and protective, and can even be a bit camp.” The human part of Lady Hare is based on Sophie’s own form. More recent wire sculptures include huge clasped hands and feet thrusting skywards.

Sophie is one of the leading female artists of our time and the youngest student to be accepted to the Royal Academy Schools since Turner. She came to early prominence in 1984 when she exhibited at Christie’s Pick of New Graduate Art Show, and began working at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in ’86 – a pivotal moment in her career. She admired Henry Moore’s monumental bronzes in the landscape itself, the work of Barbara Hepworth and Frink’s striding figures – it helped her to understand and experiment with scale.

Landscape and nature became so important that she relocated to Gloucestershire and has since spent her career exploring different media; print, drawing, tapestry, wire mesh with wet plaster embossed with machinery parts, sheet steel, stained glass and even old toys. 

Visitors can enjoy an insight into the creative process of this artist through her book and exhibited work. Seemingly indifferent to market trends, she continues to be prolific in her work. For Sophie, making art is less of a profession and more of a compulsion. Luckily for us, she shows no signs of slowing down, so we can look forward to many more exhibitions!

The exhibition runs until Sat 29th October, visit for further info. Sophie will also be doing a book signing at Waterstones in Cirencester on Thursday 17th November at 7pm. Tickets available directly from Waterstones on 01285 658998.

Sarah Edmonds is an Italian graduate from University College London, where she also studied History of Art and a short course at Slade School of Fine Art. She's been a tour guide in Tuscany and now works in marketing for Authentic Adventures, a travel company based in Stonehouse that specialises in painting holidays.

Stroud Book Festival: Illustration Exhibition

As part of this year's first ever Stroud Book Festival children’s book illustrators  Hannah Shaw, Tom Percival, Rebecca Ashdown, Martha Lightfoot and Mina May will be showing some of their work as a backdrop to the talks and events held in the George Room at the Subscription Rooms. The exhibition runs from Friday 11th November (with an opening event at 6pm) until Saturday 26th November.

They will also be appearing at the festival with a series of workshops and talks. See below and for further info!

Hannah Shaw - 

Book Festival Event: Stan Stinky (workshop), The Museum in the Park, Sat 19th Nov @ 11am. Tickets £2 / Bear On A Bike (workshop), The Museum in the Park, Sun 20th Nov @ 11am. Tickets £2 (Age 3-7)

Tom Percival -

Book Festival Event: Little Legends - Let's Make and Tell A Digital Story! (workshop), The Subscription Rooms, Sat 19th Nov @ 3:30pm. Tickets £4/£2 (Ages 5-9)

Rebecca Ashdown -

Book Festival Event: The Glump and The Peeble (workshop) with Wendy Meddour, The Museum in the Park, Sat 12th Nov @ 2pm. Tickets £2 (Ages 5-9)

Martha Lightfoot -

Book Festival Event: Make Your Own Stand Up Creatures! (workshop), The Museum in the Park, Sat 12th Nov @ 11am. Tickets £2 (Age 5+)


Book Festival Event: A Family Business? (talk) with Mina's mother - author Wendy Meddour, Sat 19th Nov @ 6pm. Tickets £4/£2

Gallery Pangolin: Synthesis by Sarah Edmonds

Jon Buck: Fruiting Body, Almuth Tebbenhoff: Moonrise, Eilis O'Connell: Gourd Form, Lynn Chadwick: Detector

Gallery Pangolin has a unique gallery setting, tucked away in the village of Chalford, on an old Victorian industrial site and working foundry. As I drive through the gates, I can see a giant sculpture of an open hand guarding the doorway of an enormous warehouse, there are unfinished pieces lurking in sheds, men and women in dusty red boiler suits move large moulds here and there, the familiar hum of circular saws is the daily soundtrack. There’s a creative energy here.

Pangolin Editions is a world class foundry and the gallery is a showcase for the unique and excellent work being created here. Celebrating twenty five years, it strives to exhibit the very best sculpture in the UK. Famous ‘alumni’ include Sarah Lucas and Damien Hirst.

The current exhibition takes its name from the synthesis of four female and four male sculptors, whose abstract and tactile exhibits offer a fresh and inspiring exposition. The gallery is as it should be, a spartan, peaceful environment in which to showcase each beautiful piece, some colourful, some smooth, others rough and spikey. Stretching our conceptual imagination, the three bronzes of Peter Randall-Page appear as intestinal, swirling and other worldly. His sketches Walnut 1 and Walnut IV conjure naturalistic forms.

I reach out to touch Jon Buck's playful Fruiting Body bronze, with electric orange painted patina. Polymorph is a little beast that is about to scuttle off the table. Symphysis is equally tactile, and accompanying prints I want, want, want. Simple, graphic shapes that are contemporary and would look relevant in any home.

The work of Lynn Chadwick is exquisite. A sculptor who lived locally, he is in the stable of artists who are consistently shown at Pangolin. He began sculpting at the age of thirty five, and only six years later won the International Prize for Sculpture at the Venice Biennale 1956, pipping Giacometti to the post. His spiky, angular abstractions are here to see, with all their tactile marks, a style that became his signature and is much admired the world over. Detector has a dalek like presence, it makes me smile – although I’m not sure why and Pyramid 1966 stands firm in the centre of the gallery, holding its own. Lion 1 guards the gallery like a boisterous pet, sculpted from stainless steel, who will always wear his shiny silver coat and never grow old.

Ann Christopher: The Dark Is Equal To The Light, John Hoskin: Bronce Piece I, Peter Randall-Page: Bronze Piece II, Charlotte Mayer: Spiral Form

Charlotte Mayer's work is elegant, thin swooshes of bronze, light as air, holding no weight in complete contrast to Bucks weighty pieces, proving the versatility of this medium. Cleverly entitled Release III and Release IV these feathery, twisting pieces could float away. Spiral Form is mesmerising in its hypnotic swirling wheel, drawing you in for a closer look.

Gourd Form and Kidney by Eilis O’Connell are immediately tactile. The gallery assistant allows me to stroke the smooth patina of Gourd Form (it won’t stain) as if stroking the cheek of a lover – they take on vital human form both physically and somehow emotionally. Sublime Geometry is kept on Cath’s desk – it’s her favourite piece and she likes to keep it close by!

The work of John Hoskin is something different all together. It’s industrial, masculine, sculpted with an engineers eye. Scaled down studies for grand high rise buildings perhaps. Ann Christopher explores both horizontal and vertical length in her work – gorgeous Resting Line represents such simplicity, it is immaculate and orderly. The Dark is Equal to Light has a phallic, symbolic presence – a monument to bronze.

Finally, the works of Almuth Tebbenhoff are sculpted from marble, ceramic and bronze with unusual sketches representing the complete range of her skill. Giocoliere and Moonrise delicately sit in the 3D opaque beauty, creating their own little shadows. They at once evoke delicacy and gravitas.

Sculpture is an art form that is tangible, often used as a bold expression or declaration of honour. Barbara Hepworth writes, “I felt the most intense pleasure in piercing the stone in order to make an abstract form and space” and it’s that intensity that guests to this exhibition can capture.

Synthesis runs until 21st October, Mon - Fri 10am till 6pm and Sat 10am till 1pm. Visit for further info. You can also see a selection of sculptures as part of the opening of the Walled Garden at the Museum in the Park until the end of December.

Sarah Edmonds is an Italian graduate from University College London, where she also studied History of Art and a short course at Slade School of Fine Art. She's been a tour guide in Tuscany and now works in marketing for Authentic Adventures, a travel company based in Stonehouse that specialises in painting holidays.